We sought to determine the prevalence of cytotoxic activity in fecal filtrates from persons with C. jejuni or C. coli enteritis. Stool specimens were collected from 20 persons with C. jejuni or C. coli enteritis, 20 persons with acute diarrheal illnesses of other causes, and 9 healthy, asymptomatic persons. Fecal filtrates were then incubated with Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) or HeLa cells. The fecal filtrate from 1 of the 20 (5%) persons with Campylobacter enteritis was cytotoxic for HeLa cells at a titer of 1:40, and 10 (50%) were cytotoxic for CHO cells at maximum titers of 1:20. Cytotoxic activity for CHO cells at a median titer of 1:20 was also present in 40% of the fecal filtrates from persons with diarrhea due to causes other than Campylobacter enteritis, and in 33% of filtrates from healthy, asymptomatic persons. The observed low level of cytotoxicity in fecal filtrates from all patient groups studied likely resulted from non-specific factors, unrelated to the pathogenesis of Campylobacter enteritis.